Fact Checking President Obama’s Final Address to the United Nations

As I listened to President Barack Obama deliver his final address to the United Nations, I was struck by some of his statements when “recounting” progress made over the past eight years and by how much of his speech included changes and progress made BEFORE his presidency and that he even stated statistics regarding changes in the past twenty-five years instead of statistics for the eight years of his presidency. So President Obama’s final address before the United Nations definitely needs some fact checking, as I’ll attempt to do in part here.

First, President Obama credited his administration with taking the global economy “from the depths of the greatest financial crisis of our time” to “avoid further catastrophe and return the global economy to growth.” While most people probably think that’s true, it’s not and totally disregards the extraordinary efforts made BEFORE President Obama took office by the Bush administration, Congress and other world leaders to avoid further collapse of the world’s largest economies in late 2008. That’s described here in great detail, as well as why the economy collapsed in the first place. In fact, as the above article states, contrary to President Obama’s final statement before the United Nations, the World Bank’s typical year-end assessment and forecast for the year 2009 was for an INCREASE in the global economic output of 0.9%; which means they were expecting economic growth in 2009 despite the financial collapse of 2008. And according to this detailed report on the global economy as President Obama’s first term drew to a close, the global economy was in its worse shape since 2009 and expected to grow at a rate of 3.5% in 2013. But as reported here, the World Bank’s 2012 year-end assessment cut their forecast for growth of the global economy in 2013 down to 2.4%. And now, as President Obama’s second term draws to an end, the World Bank is again forecasting an anemic 2.4% growth in the global economy, which was the second time they cut their forecast this year and hardly backs up Obama’s statement since economist still consider the global economy “fragile.” And since significant steps to “save” the global economy were initiated before Obama took office and the World Bank was already predicting 0.9% growth for 2009, there’s no real evidence to substantiate that President Obama significantly impacted the global economy, which is still at risk and only slightly improved.

The next totally disingenuous statement President Obama made at the United Nations probably doesn’t need much fact checking since most people didn’t believe it when Obama actually said, “we’ve taken away terrorist safe havens.” Well, nothing could be farther from the truth, as Bill O’Reilly spells out here. As Bill reported, the truth is that during President Obama’s presidency, he and Hillary Clinton enabled and literally created terrorist safe havens in Syria, Iraq, Northern Pakistan, Eastern Nigeria, Libya, Somalia, Iran, Algeria, Afghanistan, Yemen, the Sinai Peninsula, and have spread into France, Brussels, Germany and the United States. Even though ISIS didn’t exist when Barack Obama took office in 2009, the latest reports indicate that they’re alive and well in up to thirty countries now, as indicated here. So what President Obama said was an outright lie by ANY standard.

President Obama also claimed to have “resolved the Iranian nuclear issue through diplomacy.” The President must think the entire world is stupid since we all know now that whatever else the nuclear deal with Iran was (which is still a big secret), it was nothing but an outright bribe to the tune of over thirty-three BILLION dollars paid in foreign currencies and gold to Iran–the world’s number one sponsor of terrorism! So very few believe Iran will actually be deterred in their nuclear ambitions and no one really believes Iran’s nuclear threat was resolved through diplomacy. Additionally, as this Congressional hearing reveals, part of the payment was ransom for the return of American hostages.

Later in his speech, President Obama said that during his presidency, “American businesses have created now fifteen million new jobs,” but that’s not exactly true either. As explained in this report, Hillary Clinton has been using that same number, which doesn’t take into account the jobs lost in the beginning of Obama’s presidency. So the total number of net jobs is more like ten million, and there are many reports that many of the jobs aren’t good jobs since so many of them are low wage and part-time positions. He went on to say that, “After the recession, the top one percent of Americans were capturing more than ninety percent of income growth, but today that’s down to about half.” Well, I have no idea what that means and can’t find anything to support or disprove it. Then President Obama said, “Last year, poverty in this country fell at the fastest rate in nearly fifty years.” Well, even his own administration doesn’t seem to back that up and said the “supposed” decrease was “the largest annual percentage point drop since 1999.” Like many other Americans, I tend to think most of the statistics released by our government these days are “cooked,” so I went looking elsewhere for what might be a more independent and reliable report and this one from the National Poverty Center/University of Michigan states (based on Census reports), “Since 2000, the poverty rate has slowly increased, peaking at 15.1 percent in 2010 and remaining relatively stable.” Additionally, the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality reports that poverty rates are higher in the United States than in many other “rich” countries, and that American children are more likely to be poor than children in other comparison countries. Finally, despite President Obama’s misleading statements otherwise, even the International Monetary Fund recently warned the United States about our high poverty rates, which they report at fifteen percent as reported above. The IMF also slashed their forecast for our economic growth down to 2.2% for 2016 and predict 2.5% growth for 2017. So while President Obama was “lecturing” and “preaching” to world leaders about following his example, the truth is that the global economy is literally doing better than the U.S. economy and our poverty rates are higher than those in most comparable countries.

Another statement in President Obama’s speech before the United Nations that made him seem totally out of touch with reality and doesn’t even need fact checking was his declaration that “A quarter century after the end of the Cold War, the world is by many measures less violent and more prosperous than ever before.” I seriously doubt many would agree with that, but of course, there’s no telling what kind of “measurements” he’s using! And we all know that Barack Obama didn’t have anything to do with ending the Cold War, so that has nothing to do with him or his “progress.” He continued talking about changes over the past twenty-five years; including that “the number of people living in extreme poverty was cut from forty percent to ten percent in the past twenty-five years.” Well, that certainly didn’t happen on his watch since poverty rates in America reached a new high in 2010 and remain virtually unchanged despite his statements otherwise, as well as in comparison to economically similar countries. Then he said “cracking the genetic code promises to cure diseases that have plagued us for centuries.”…which was also done long before his arrival on the global scene and without any input from him. He also said “the number of democracies around the world has nearly doubled in the last twenty-five years.”…something else he definitely didn’t have a thing to do with since his “lead from behind” strategy has failed miserably and created absolute chaos in one country after another! In fact, without taking the time to research it, I’m pretty sure the number of democracies have actually decreased during his presidency, so that’s a particularly hypocritical statement. Of course, since President Obama really doesn’t have much to take credit for in almost eight years, the only significant and positive changes he can talk about without lying are those of the past twenty-five years! He kept talking about more peaceful…more prosperous…on a path of growth…and he used the term “international order” repeatedly. He was very defensive about immigration and made accusations of racism, xenophobia, nationalism and generally promoted globalism and a world without borders or national distinctions of any kind. He intentionally insulted Russia and criticized policies of other countries and generally speaking, was just as condescending and contemptuous as he “lectured” the United Nations assembly as in his speech before the Congressional Black Caucus Saturday night.

Other than an occasional cough and a little laughter when Obama suggested that too many in Washington think all problems are caused or can be solved by Washington, The hall was absolutely silent during President Obama’s entire speech, even when he said Israel can’t continue to permanently occupy and settle Palestinian land, which would normally get a rousing response at the United Nations.

President Obama is totally out of touch with reality and every time he opens his mouth now, he makes a fool of himself because he doesn’t realize that the blinders are off when it comes to how millions of Americans and the rest of the world view him. People don’t respect or like someone who habitually lies to them or about themselves and their accomplishments, and the sad truth is that President Obama has always cared more about himself and his legacy than he does about the wellbeing of his country or the American people. Listening to his speech yesterday and to the difference in how it was received compared to the beginning of his presidency speaks volumes about his real legacy and reveals that just as millions of Americans have come to realize, leaders from around the world now know that his campaign promises for hope and change were nothing more than smoke and mirrors. And when history is written, America and the world will look back at Barack Obama’s presidency as one of the most corrupt, most incompetent, most harmful and least transparent in history. He literally squandered the boundless potential of his presidency on petty, partisan, racially divisive policies and set a tone of “my way or the highway” very early on in his presidency and then blamed the Republicans’ refusal to submit to his arrogance and utter disregard for the balance of powers set forth in the Constitution and for the rule of law on racism. Unfortunately for our nation, he effectively used the color of his skin to neuter the Republican Party; but he and the Democrats (as well as many Republican elites) will soon learn that while they might have won the battle, they lost the war because the American people didn’t elect Barack Obama or them to do what they’ve done to our country and to the world and will send that message loud and clear in about six weeks.

After living through eight years of Barack Obama’s divisive, dishonest, corrupt and partisan presidency, we know we can’t afford even one more day (much less four years) of that kind of leadership, which is why Hillary Clinton won’t be elected President by an honest counting of our votes. The American people of all walks of life, of every color and all political persuasions have become very good fact checkers thanks to the internet and social media, so it’s a lot harder to pull the wool over our eyes than it used to be, which is why we so greatly appreciate Donald Trump’s plain spoken and common sense approach to the challenges we face. We don’t expect perfection in our leaders, but we do expect honesty and integrity and that our Presidents and political leaders can’t be bought off by rich donors and special interest groups, which we’ve found lacking in both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. So we know the truth, and that’s set us free to make a better choice for our country and for the sake of our children!

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